Teams Won't Leave Pits Without Chicane

Williams technical director Sam Michael has revealed that a majority of teams will not even leave the pitlane for the start of the United States Grand Prix if a chicane is not installed at the final corner

Teams Won't Leave Pits Without Chicane

With the Michelin runners admitting that they will only be able to compete in this afternoon's race if a chicane is inserted to slow cars through the final corner, the fate of the event now hangs on whether Ferrari give their approval to the construction of the chicane.

But with Ferrari having so far appeared to show little sign of compromise over the matter throughout the weekend, Michael fears that agreement may not come in time.

"The only solution is to have the chicane in to slow the speeds in turn 12," said Michael. "In that situation Michelin will approve the tyres for the race, we will not get their approval otherwise.

"Nine teams want to have the chicane. At the moment it looks like it will be non-Championship. We will be ready to go out of the pit lane at 1230 with our two cars as will the other nine cars. If there's no chicane no one will go from the pit lane. It's only down to Ferrari."

Speaking about the discussions that have taken place at Indianapolis, Michael added: "What we offered as the nine teams is that Ferrari take up the front row, all the Bridgestone teams take the top six and all the Michelin teams form in order behind and that wasn't accepted.

"That was our only solution as a penalty for us asking for a chicane. They could take up the top six grid positions and it would be a full Championship race. But that wasn't accepted."

Red Bull Racing boss Christian Horner echoed Michael's comments that it was unsafe for the race to take place if the chicane was not inserted.

"We can't run this tyre on the high-speed banking so therefore there needs to be a reduction in speeds around that turn," he explained.

Minardi boss Paul Stoddart, who has backed the plans for a chicane even though his team runs on Bridgestone, is adamant that the race must run this afternoon.

"It is very difficult," he said. "Nobody wants to be in this position, nobody wants this pressure, but what is important is Formula One the sport must survive.

"We need to see a motor race. Hopefully there will be a race. We need to see a chicane in the turn before the banking to enable the race to go ahead and that is what is going to be.

"Perhaps things can be done to change (the FIA's) minds before the next hour is up. The group of nine teams have today decided to have this race because what is important is you have 120,000 people around here and millions on television who need to see a race. Whether it counts towards the Championship or not remains to be seen."

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